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2014 Buick Lacrosse Comfort & Quality

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With the LaCrosse, Buick suits up its largest sedan with room for five people--five real people, three across the back seat, without the coach-seat cramp of most mid-size sedans. It's a step above that class of cars, and not just in price.

The first impression of the LaCrosse from the driver's seat isn't necessarily of spaciousness, though. The roofline is tall enough for good head room, but the console design is fairly tall and wide--more so than in the related 2014 Chevy Impala. The seats are supportive but soft to the touch, and adjust eight ways even in base trim. Upper models also get upgraded perforated leather and ventilated heating and cooling features, along with more adjustments and memory settings.

The LaCrosse has a premium feel--not quite luxuriant, but well turned-out, with great back-seat space.

The back seat is where the LaCrosse makes its case for premium status, above and beyond Buick's smaller Regal, and above some of the more popularly priced family four-doors. Head room remains rather regal, and the LaCrosse is wide enough and long enough for two adults to sit very comfortably, and for a smaller adult to ride comfortably in between. It's still ideal for four adults, but can pinch-hit capably for a crossover when it needs to.

The console and glovebox are big enough for the usual collection of CDs, owner's manuals, pens, sunglasses, and bagfuls of change. A huge trunk, as well as folding seatbacks, can hold plenty of cargo or accommodate larger items.

The interior appointments and standards of refinement in the LaCrosse's cabin are truly luxury-car caliber. Across most of the interior, materials are lavish, with fine detailing, ambient lighting, and nicely done faux-stitching on the dashboard, along with plenty of soft-touch surfaces. The materials have been updated for the new model year, along with the seats, with a new "Ultra Luxury" cabin option with a less heavily treated leather and a new woodgrain trim complementing a slightly reshaped center stack.

Only the base models can feel just a little bit simple and plasticky, and the woodgrain trim can seem a little out of place in some of the models. But otherwise there's a wide range of materials, including plastic, wood and leather, with quality rising as you move up the model line.

Ride quality in the LaCrosse fits the premium look and feel, with the measures of Buick's 'Quiet Tuning' philosophy damping out nearly all wind and road noise. The only thing we've noticed with V-6 models is that they tend to have more of a raspy sound under acceleration than you might expect from a quiet luxury car.

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